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Economy in Brief

U.S. Chain Store Sales Fall Hard
by Tom Moeller  October 21, 2014

The International Council of Shopping Centers and Goldman Sachs reported that chain store sales declined 0.3% last week following a 0.7% decline during the prior week. As a result of weekly sales weakness, the y/y gain halved to 2.1%. The declines left sales so far in October 1.3% below September when sales fell 1.7% from August. During the last ten years there has been a 70% correlation between the y/y change in chain store sales and the change in retail sales at general merchandise stores.

The ICSC-Goldman Sachs retail chain-store sales index is constructed using the same-store sales (stores open for one year) reported by 78 stores of seven retailers: Dayton Hudson, Federated, Kmart, May, J.C. Penney, Sears and Wal-Mart. General merchandise store sales account for 15% of total retail sales. The data can be found in Haver's SURVEYW database.

ICSC-Goldman Sachs (SA, 1977=100) 10/18/14 10/11/14 10/04/14 Y/Y 2013 2012 2011
Total Weekly Chain Store Sales 555.1 556.9 561.1 2.1% 2.3% 3.0% 3.2%
   W/W % -0.3 -0.7 0.1 -- -- -- --
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